FIFA suspends Nigeria

  • As NFF Acting General Secretary appoints adviser, heads of departments

MaigariThe FIFA Emergency Committee on Wednesday announced the immediate suspension of the Nigeria Football Federation (NFF) and by extension Nigeria with immediate effect from all its activities.

This is on account of government’s interference in the running of the NFF.

Article 13, par. 1 and article 17, par. 1 of the FIFA Statutes oblige member associations to manage their affairs independently and with no influence from third parties.

The decision follows a letter sent by FIFA to the NFF on July 4, 2014 in which it expressed its great concern after the NFF was served with court proceedings and consequently an order preventing president of the NFF, Aminu Maigari; the NFF Executive Committee members; and the NFF Congress from running the affairs of Nigerian football.
The order was granted by a High Court in Jos, Plateau State.
The said court order compelled the Minister of Sports, Dr Tammy Danagogo, to appoint a senior member of the civil service, Lawrence Latken, to manage the NFF until the matter was heard in court, without giving any date for such a hearing.
Katken then convened an extraordinary general assembly on July 5, 2014.
FIFA said the extraordinary general assembly was convened in violation of the NFF statutes.
Originally, an elective congress had been planned by the NFF to take place on August 26, 2014.
FIFA said the suspension will be lifted once the court actions have been withdrawn and the properly elected NFF Executive Committee, the NFF general assembly and the NFF administration are able to work without any interference in their affairs.
Owing to this decision, no team from Nigeria of any sort (including clubs) can have any international sporting contact (art. 14 par. 3 of the FIFA Statutes).
During the period of suspension, the NFF may not be represented in any regional, continental or international competitions, including at club level or in friendly matches.
The most immediate effect is that Nigeria will not be entitled to participate in the upcoming FIFA U-20 Women’s World Cup (5-24 August 2014) should the suspension not be lifted by July 15, 2014.
In addition, neither the NFF nor any of its members or officials may benefit from any FIFA or CAF development programmes, courses or training during the suspension period.

Meanwhile,  Katken, has moved to solidify his control of football matters in the country.

A statement from the Glass House, Abuja on Wednesday disclosed that Tunde Aderibigbe has been appointed as Senior Special Adviser.

Others were also named as heads of different departments as the ship of the Football House steadies for immediate challenges.

Bola Oyeyode is now Head of General Competitions while Mr. Ademola Olajire is Head of Communications and Barrister Okey Obi is Head of Legal/Corporate Services.

Former international striker Rafiu Yusuf heads the Technical Department; Mr. Ayo Abdulrahaman is Head of International Competitions and Dr. Christian Emeruwa is Special Assistant to Assistant General Secretary.

Emmanuel Adesanya is Head of Inter-Clubs, Alizor Chuks heads Marketing Department, Afolabi Olusola heads the Internal Audit Unit and Sunday Okayi heads the Referees Unit.

Also appointed are Ruth David (Federations Cup); Tolulope Abe (ICT); Magaji Abdullahi (Human Resources); Barnabas Joro (Protocol Unit) and; Dayo Enebi (International Friendlies).

Isaac Ajisafe, previously Executive Secretary of the Nigeria Women League, moves to Nigeria National League, while Danlami Alanana returns to the Nigeria Women League. Shola Ogunnowo retains his position as Executive Secretary, Nigeria Nationwide League.